As we (hopefully) leave rainbow bagels and frosé in 2016, what’s on the menu for the year ahead? Top chefs and food experts have shared their predictions for 2017 and we’ve rounded up some of the trends they agreed on. From plant-based cooking to ice-cream roll-ups, here’s what the experts think we’ll be eating this year.
Vegetables! – Chef Jun Tanaka (The Ninth) says, “2017 will see an even heavier focus on vegetables. Whilst we have always known the health benefits of eating a plant-heavy diet, restaurants will start making vegetables the focus of the dish. This doesn’t mean ignoring meat; just making it less of a focal point.” SousChef’s Nicola Lando agrees and says we can expect to see more broccoli, aubergine and cauliflower replacing meat as mains.
Cooking over fire – “Fuelled by last year’s fascination with flame, fire pits and grills are popping up faster than you can rub two sticks together. Look out for a new Barbecoa from Jamie Oliver, a wood-fired grill at Stevie Parle’s hotly anticipated opening, Palatino, and duck cooked over fire at Bastien.” (Source: The Telegraph)
Purple foods – Whole Foods are championing purple foods for 2017, from purple corn and cauliflower to black rice and elderberries. “The power of purple goes beyond the vibrant colour and often indicates nutrient density and antioxidants,” they explain, and the science checks out.
Non-wheat pasta – Farewell courgetti, hello seaweed pasta! Edamame noodles and black bean spaghetti are already on sale at Sainsbury’s and now Whole Foods is predicting a rise in pastas made from quinoa, lentils and chickpeas.
Flavours of the Deep South – “Po’ boys, chargrilled oysters and other Louisiana-style dishes are becoming the UK’s hot new street food,” says Olive Magazine. They recommend the New Orleans-style oysters from Decatur and the shrimp-stuffed baguettes from Slingin’ Po’ Boys.
Laksa – Food and wine writer Zeren Wilson reckons laksa will be the next noodle-based soup to make a splash in London. “Both Sambal Shiok‘s residency at Blend Café in Green Lanes, Harringay, and The Laksa Kitchen‘s stint at Tolli Cafe in Kentish Town, are trial runs for permanent sites. More will follow, and don’t be surprised to see larger restaurant groups (and after, supermarkets) to spot, and exploit the momentum.” (Source: Londonist)
Ice-cream roll-ups – “If you’re over the whole freakshake thing, keep an eye out for ice-cream roll-ups, a Thai street food trend poised to go global this year,” says Condé Nast Traveler.
Vegetable yoghurt – Waitrose predicts the rise of savoury yoghurts infused with carrot, beetroot, sweet potato and tomato. (They’re already a hit in the US, apparently). Sounds a bit odd but think of the possibilities – a cooling dollop with a curry, or as a dip for crudités.
Amaranth – “There’s a new super grain in town, and chances are you’ll start to see it this year in place of quinoa or farro in breakfast porridge, salads and soups. This ancient seed, which was a staple of the Aztec diet, is gluten-free, fiber- and protein-rich and tastes a little nutty, like brown rice.” (Source: Pure Wow)
Added extras – 2017 will be ‘the year of the Super Garnish’, says Londonist food editor, Helen Graves, “So expect to see lots of sprinkles, sauces and salsas to be added by the customer at the table – think flavoured salts, experimental condiments and textural additions.”
Best of the rest: Charcoal. Watermelon water. More poké (Hawaiian raw fish salad). Aubergine. Japanese whisky. Nordic food (and more hygge-mania). Orange wine. Jackfruit. Even more tacos.
Which food trends would you like to see shaking up the UK dining scene this year?